Here’s my list. You know, just like everyone else does at the end of the year: “Top this or that of 2013.” Only I’d don’t think there will be too many lists quite like it. It is hard to avoid looking back over the past year without reflecting on the good and the bad. Some days I wonder if maybe my age is getting the better of me as I think I’m forgetting a few things but, nevertheless, there were some good times and some not so good times for me in 2013. Here goes.
Numero Uno. Juneau. Yeah the capital city of the Last Frontier, Alaska. A few years ago I became the fortunate heir to a seat on the “Taco Trade Council” board made vacant by a friend and hydronics industry leader Jim Hilpipre. Each year Taco, Inc. gather a rather rowdy bunch of contractors working within the plumbing, hydronics and HVAC field to test products, guide product development and share in good company; a trait Taco is known for throughout the contracting industry. This year we sat down for meetings over the course of three days in Juneau, Alaska and let me tell you it was the best place I can think of for such an activity.
The sites were amazing, the company was great and the fishing was even better. Last year we convened at the new Taco Learning Center in Cranston, R.I., but this year will be hard to top.
Dos. Carbon Monoxide poisoning sucks. Just a short while ago I found myself feeling the effects of this terrible (and often deadly) situation. You can read about it in my blog post: “My bout w/ CO on the jobsite”. Since my encounter I have purchased a personal safety monitor for situations just like this and I strongly recommend you take it serious when I say it can happen to you, too.
Tres. Care to Ride 2013. The good folks at Oil Heat Cares assist needy persons and organizations with the replacement of their oil-heating appliance. Funds are raised to purchase heating equipment and OESP (The National Association of Oil and Energy Service Professionals) Chapters, Members and other Oil Heat partners identify those within their neighborhoods that need a temporary helping hand and install the heating equipment at no cost to the homeowner.
The Care to Ride event made for one of the best rides I’ve ever taken part in. I practically grew up on the back of or riding my own motorcycle in a family of two-wheeled enthusiast. The Pennsylvania countryside has some pretty awesome twists and turns, beautiful scenery and the weather that day turned out to be perfect. With a stop at the Yuengling Brewery tour along the way was the icing on the cake.
Cuatro. In the past I have been able to measure the amount of successful trainings I have attended by how many time I have witnessed the John Barba “Primary/Secondary” dance thingy he does. Unfortunately I didn’t get to see Barba’s dance this year but I am excited to have met and sat in on some Wes Sisco class time. Wes is the lead trainer for Uponor. You can read more about my time and visit to Uponor here: “The Uponor Experience”. I’ll use this forum to admit, publicly, that I miss sitting in on Barba’s class and will make a hard effort to see the dance again in 2014.
Cinco. Mechanical-Hub 2.0. When John and I set out to create “The Hub” we wanted it to be a place for contractors to come and get industry news, see new tools and products and also hear from other contractors and industry experts they might not be hearing from otherwise. The original site design set a decent foundation to build upon; we said early on that we want to keep the site fresh and updates as new technology comes along. We did that last September when we launched a complete redesign. I personally think the new design is awesome; of course I do considering that I had 50% of the say in its final build but, we very much rely on our visitors/friends to help us make the changes wanted or needed to better bring the information to the contracting professional.
Hub 2.0 might only be around for another 9-12 months, who knows? We are always looking for ways to improve and welcome your suggestions.
Seis. I learned to count to 6 in Spanish. Just kidding. Happy New Year, friends! Thanks for your continued support. If you like what you find here on The Hub, please share our site with your friends and colleagues.